Rural Australians for Refugees have called for the transfer of ill people from detention on Manus Island and Nauru to Australia.
Federal crossbenchers have announced their plan to introduce The Urgent Medical Treatment Bill to parliament this week and RAR president, Marie Sellstrom called it the first real chance to transer ill people to Australia for treatment in years.
"[MPs] need to forget their political differences and support the bill to be put before parliament next week. Until now it is only the crossbenchers' who are showing the leadership and commitment to justice that Australians expect,” Ms Sellstrom said.
"It is time for politicians to re-think their stand on children, women and men in onshore and offshore detention,” she said.
RAR members have been holding vigils in rural towns and cities throughout Australia in support of the #KidsOffNauru campaign.
RAR convenor Maree Byrne said RAR in the Southern Highlands had joined a chorus of rural voices calling for the removal of children from off-shore detention.
"Southern Highlanders have particpated in rallies in Canberra and they've held several vigils in the streets of the Southern Highlands,” Ms Byrne said.
The bells at Holy Trinity Church in Berrima have tolled every Friday for each child that remains on Nauru.
Ms Sellstrom said that a number of RAR members have visited people in detention centres at Villawood and Broadmeadows and are gravely concerned for their welfare.
"Australians want a society which is just, tolerant and welcoming; where innocent children are not held on isolated islands or in Australian detention centres deprived of the joys of childhood,” she said.
There are still 12 children remaining on Nauru. RAR has called for all 12, their families and any other men and women in need of medical attention to be brought to Australia.
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